Fiat and Chrysler CEO Sergio Marchionne said on Jan. 13 that a decision to shut down the company's plant in Sicily was "irreversible."
Speaking in Detroit, Marchionne said plans to shutter the plant, which employs around 1,400 people, although "a great controversy," would go ahead.
His speech was interrupted by cries of protest from those opposing the move. "Shame on you Fiat and Chrysler for killing jobs!" one angry protester shouted.
Earlier on Jan. 13 hundreds of Fiat workers in southern Italy went on strike in protest at the company's decision to shut it down by the end of 2011.
Marchionne had first announced the closure last June, as a move to cut costs.
Copyright Agence France-Presse, 2010